ALL THE FEELINGS: Doctor Who’s “The Angels Take Manhattan”

BBC America

Come here, Who fandom. Just come here. Let’s all hug? Can we hug? We knew it was coming. We knew it was goodbye. And still. STILL! I have all the feelings.

Let’s start this week’s recap off from the beginning. Showrunner Steven Moffatt brings back one of my favorite villains, the Weeping Angels, this time in New York City. The cute little domestic, TARDIS life of Rory, Amy and their son, The Doctor, continues on an outing to Central Park. The Doctor’s immersed in a crime novel, Amy’s got new reading glasses and her and Rory’s schmoopiness irks the Doctor’s inner teenage boy. (Timelords HATE cooties.) There’s a bit of sadness in that Amy, who last episode mentioned she thinks she’s been with the Doctor a decade now, is getting noticeably older (the glasses, lines around her eyes).

Rory goes off to get coffee and ends up getting kidnapped by Weeping Angels and sent to 1938, right into the clutches of Professor River Song. Yep. River’s back. I have a lot of mixed feelings about River. I always find it hard to swallow that the Doctor would have any kind of lasting or meaningful romantic relationship with anyone he comes across. I love the flirting, I love the sexual tension, and yes, I was a big fan of his relationship with Rose Tyler. (Sorry, sorry. I know! I know!) So the acceptance of River as his “wife” makes me a little bitter. I’m still not sure, after all this time, how the Doctor really feels about River. I mean, he leaves her to break her own wrist? But then heals it? Is she really his girlfriend? The Doctor doesn’t need a wife, though him checking his hair before seeing her way cute — if not, a bit out of character. I don’t know. I guess it humanizes him, but does he even need humanizing?

I buy River as his equal and his short-term partner, but I don’t buy her as “in love” with him or him with her. Like she said, he’s an ageless “god” (which I guess, answers my “Town Called Mercy” recap question: Is the Doctor a god?) and she’s extraordinary, but the Doctor rides “solo” so to speak. He picks up companions, but in the end, he’s a lone ranger.

The Baby Angels were creepy as hell in a sort of The Ring way where scary children are always the worst. But the actual timey-wimey stuff of the episode, and the collector and mythology of the Weeping Angels was so way off. It didn’t even remotely attempt to make sense. The plot of this episode legit flipped you off and went about it’s business. I can’t even with that. The Angels have evolved so much, in terms of scariness, and now they’re just what? Hiding out in a hotel? Seems wildly inconsistent.

But then I didn’t care at all because I was too busy crying my eyes out over Rory and Amy. You two stupid idiots, and you just love each other so much. When they were on the roof, jumping together? When Amy decided to go with him to wherever the rogue Angel was sending them? You knew they’d never be separated, not even by the powers of time and space and oh god, it’s all so romantic. So where did they end up? The 30s? Does that mean they knew the future? They could have stopped like, 9-11 or something? Is that a weird thing to think? Could they, at some point, go visit Brian (Rory’s dad) as a baby?

MY BIGGEST THING THOUGH: Poor Brian!!!! They introduced him only to totally tragically Wilf-and-Donna him. Is the Doctor gonna head back and let him know what happened to Rory and Amy? How is he going to explain it to Rory’s mom? That was my main thought during Amy’s decision. And also, how weirdly selfish it was for the Doctor to beg her not to go.

I think maybe that was foreshadowing to his inability to handle any more loss. He is broken and darker now. When this new companion arrives, he’s going to need her more than ever.

What did you guys think? CAN WE ALL CUDDLE UNTIL CHRISTMAS? TC Mark

image – BBC America

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